Italian Language Observatory And Members

Dr. Stabile’s Statement
October 12, 2016
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Italian Language Observatory And Members

The Members of the Italian language Observatory

Cristiano MAGGIPINTO
Primo Consigliere, Italian Embassy, Washington, DC

Lucia DALLA MONTÀ
Direttore Ufficio Scolastico, Italian Embassy, Washington, DC

Antonio BENETTI
Direttore Ufficio Scuola, Consulate General of Italy in New York

Frank FUSARO
President, Columbus Citizen Foundation

Daniel STABILE
President, Copilas

Margaret CUOMO
President, Italian Language Foundation

Louis TALLARINI
Chairman, Italian Language Foundation

Carlo PICCOLO
National Italian American Foundation

Berardo PARADISO
President, IACE, New York

Anthony Julian TAMBURRI
Dean, Calandra Institute (CUNY)

Antonio VITTI
Immediate Past President, AATI

Roberto DOLCI
Università Stranieri Perugia

Members of the Teacher Group

Roberto DOLCI
Università Stranieri Perugia

Anna DE FINA
Georgetown University

Antonio VITTI
Immediate Past President, AATI
Members of the Student Group

Berardo PARADISO
President, IACE NY

Filomena RICCIARDI
Conference of Presidents of Major Italian American Organizations

Anthony Julian TAMBURRI
Dean, Calandra Institute (CUNY)

Members of the Communication Group

Daniel STABILE
President, Copilas

Margaret CUOMO
President, Italian Language Foundation

Anthony Julian TAMBURRI
Dean, Calandra Institute (CUNY)

Bruna PETRARCA BOYLE
University of RHODE ISLAND

Nicoletta VALLE-SELLA
Docente HS, WEST VIRGINIA

WHAT IS The Italian Language Observatory

The Italian Language Observatory is a multi-year project intended to direct, monitor, coordinate, and conduct any and all other activities related to the dissemination of the Italian language in the United States.

It counts on the support of the consular network and of the entire cultural network, in particular, the school offices and the cultural institutes. In addition to the institutional component, the Observatory contemplates among its members, teacher associations, language program management agencies (Enti Gestori), associations and other stakeholders that have contributed to the reinstatement of the AP in Italian.

The Observatory is structured as follows: one Committee responsible for management and direction, and three working groups.

The Embassy has priority in choosing the membership, based on recognized prestige/experience or based on expedience or vicinity to the site of the meetings.

When members of the Committee or Working Groups reside outside the District of Columbia, the meetings can take place through conference call or any other means the Group may decide to adopt for timely and more effective communication.

The Groups may work jointly or severally depending on the matters to be discussed and may invite experts to delve more fully into specific topics.

The members and experts voluntarily pledge to refrain from disseminating information or communications on the work being conducted or on the persons who participate in any capacity.

In order to ensure the highest involvement of the various bodies participating in the dissemination of Italian language and culture and the AP program and test, each representative assumes the responsibility to distribute the information agreed upon to his/her organization for required follow-up.

No data or study and research work conducted under the framework of the Observatory’s activities may be published without the consent of the Embassy.

The Head of the Education Office at the Embassy is entitled to participate in all the working groups.

THE COMMITTEE

Committee: representatives of the Embassy, New York Consulate General, Enti Gestori, AATI, COPILAS, donor Italian-American organizations, Italian universities, U.S. universities.

Responsibilities: monitoring status; definition of guidelines, identification of strategic actions to develop and implement Italian language and culture; definition of the objectives, timelines, and evaluation criteria for the working groups; dissemination of information on initiatives.

THE THREE WORKING GROUPS

They are responsible for performing the objectives set by the Committee and for identifying operational guidelines to achieve them. They deal with different sectors of interest, but are closely inter-related. In order to guarantee maximum efficiency, the structure of the groups must necessarily be lean.

In the initial phase, the Groups will work jointly and agree upon the topics and initiatives that require specific examination.

They may count on the consultation of experts and scholars in the various sectors considered.

The Groups will keep the Committee constantly updated on their initiatives and report to the Committee in the plenary sessions it convenes.

TEACHERS GROUP

Members: a representative from the Italian Studies Department of U.S. universities, a representative from Italian universities, an elementary/middle school teacher, a high school teacher (AP exam), an administrator.

Responsibilities: indentifying one or more experts to represent the Committee at the College Board meetings that deal with AP exams, AP books, AP preparation courses, AP professors; Signing agreements with local universities to organize linguistic and language teaching courses for teachers, especially those that teach AP courses, and to extend best practices for Italian teaching methodologies. The courses should allow the participants to earn credits; Indentifying initiatives that stimulate and create incentives to pursue careers as teachers of Italian; Indentifying more adequate training methodologies and evaluation criteria; Stimulating research and innovation in methodological-didactic procedures and in teaching aids; Producing materials for the teaching of Italian language and for the dissemination of Italian culture (also in English).

Activities:

a) Contacts with the College Board (sample AP exams, courses for professors, list of the professor’s instructors, re-examining curricula and syllabi);

b) Contacts with local universities to agree on language education;

c) Stimulate the profession of Italian teachers (through marketing, academic incentives, training in loco and in Italy);

d) Qualifications and certifications (evaluation of the situation in other states, launching of negotiations for the recognition of qualifications and certifications based on the initiatives currently in place in California, Maryland and Texas ).

ALUMNI/STUDENT GROUP

Members: an expert in the local academic and university system, a representative from an Italian language program management agency (Enti Gestori), a representative from an Italian-American organization, and a representative from an organization that deals with Italy/US cultural exchange.

Responsibilities: promoting the Italian language among families and schools; defining a plan of action for local schools and academic authorities; identifying incentives and activities of particular interest to students.

Activities:

a) Study and select strategies to involve local academic authorities (marketing, historical-cultural-scientific lectures and conferences in schools);
b) Involve Catholic schools;
c) Supply materials and educational support;
d) Organize guided field trips to exhibitions and shows on our country,…;
e) Organize prized competitions and activities (i.e. educational treasure hunts; award of materials, trips; scholarships . . .)

COMMUNICATION GROUP

Members: an expert in the communication and marketing sectors, a representative from the teachers’ groups, a representative from the university, a representative from the Italian- American organizations. They serve also as editorial staff.

Responsibilities: collecting and disseminating information relevant to users through an independent structure that could also be online; setting up an online communication platform; creating a blog for teachers to exchange ideas and experiences. Managing the website and updating it will require the presence of one or more experts in the field.

Activities:

a) Informative (bulletin, newsletter, . . .) and interactive website (forum reserved for the teaching staff, forum for families, students . . .), preferably in collaboration with institutions and organizations that already have their own structure and experience in the sector;
b) Marketing strategies and strategies to invest resources aimed at promoting the AP program;
c) Identifying a true “head of the Press Office;”
d) Fundraising activities.

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